Pets in Nanjing, China

Just some photos and a little food for thought. CNN recently did a story about live animals sold as keychains in Beijing. It’s not limited to the capital city, however; you can buy these keychains in Nanjing as well.

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These keychains were in the Confucius Temple market in Nanjing. There are also several pet stores were animals are sometimes crammed into cages. Some are more fortunate and have space, but turtles and smaller animals seem to be particularly unlucky.

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I had the misfortune of seeing a deceased bunny tossed into the garbage. No lunch was eaten that day by yours truly.

Also, once spring rolls around rabbits and gerbils go on sale, typically outside of elementary and high schools for the kids alongside comic books and candy. These rabbits were driven to school by motorcycle, then the seller waits outside. My friend bought a rabbit last week for 20 RMB, or $3 US. Inbreeding is fairly common; the rabbit my friend bought is blind, much to his surprise. I used to have a blind cat and was able to tell pretty quickly with the aid of a pen light.

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But, as for the people buying the pets, I can say that dogs and birds are usually treated very well by their owners. Dogs are the pets of choice, and enjoy long walks around town usually without a leash. Men buy birds and have clubs outside in parks where they show them off, talking about the best type of seed. Usually if a pet can survive the actual pet store, it seems like they’ll have a good life afterwards.

Anyway. It’s tough resisting buying all of the turtles and setting them free in a lake, regardless…

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